Fast Dispatch: Iranians, Palestinians and Mormons

The mid-week news brought us more of the same on North Korea and on Trump.  So we’ll skip over that to the interesting stuff.

Hoda Kotb Becomes Today Co-Anchor

Hoda Kotb has just become part of the first ever two-female co-anchor team of The Today Show, replacing Matt Lauer who was fired for sexual misconduct.  The relevance of this is:

  • It’s the highest-profile replacement of someone to fall to the #metoo movement
  • The Today Show has never before had two female anchors.

Logan Paul

Fair warning: This is macabre.  YouTube star Logan Paul posted a video of finding an apparent suicide in Japan.  He was reportedly not very somber about this, but subsequently has been bullied  into several apologies.

This saturated the media due to the extreme nature, the pain of people whose loved ones have committed suicide (and their public reactions to any subsequent mention of suicide), the plethora of anti-suicide tips and the concern that publicizing a suicide would result in more suicides (called a contagion effect or copy-cat suicides.)


Trump has beaten the Iranian hardliners… by pumping oil.  Or they’ve beaten themselves.  Or the youth have.  Regardless, Iranian protests are happening again.



President Trump has threatened to cease U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority.

What you need to know:

The Palestinian response was, oddly, “We weren’t doing what you want, so now you’re cutting aid?  So now why should we do what you want?   They may not have read his book.


The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints – more commonly known as Mormons – announced that their President, Thomas Monson, has died at age 90.  Monson was President of the Mormon Church since 2008, and was known for his private visits to the needy and for opening the church up to research while maintaining a liturgical (or hard) line against gay marriage.  Mormon membership grew under his tenure, largely from outside of the U.S.

Russell M. Nelson, age 93, is expected to be the next President due to Church laws on precedence.  As the role of President is a life appointment, this may be a temporary appointment.

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